Why a 10 Minute Workout CAN be Enough
I remember the day a friend of mine told me about her new workout program. She was using this cool app that sent her a 7 minute workout everyday and she was loving it. Being the good friend that I am, I congratulated her and encouraged her to keep going. This was great for her since she hadn’t been exercising regularly. It was a great start but I couldn’t help but think that it wasn’t for me. And I was concerned that the general public thought 7 minutes of exercise a day was enough to see results?? When would they do their REAL workout?? I was a skeptic to say the least.
As a Personal Trainer, I recommend exercising 4-6 times a week for 30-60 min. 7 minutes in my mind just didn’t cut it. Then one day close to Christmas my email inbox dinged and up popped a 10 minute workout video from YouTube. I found myself surrounded by a pile of wrapping paper and to-do lists. I had a headache that wouldn’t quit and I hadn’t been able to fit my workout in that day. Something told me to give it a shot. It was only 10 minutes.
So I laced up my shoes, cleared away the wrapping paper and pulled up a corner of floor space to sweat. And sweat I did. Since it was a short workout, the instructor made sure to up the intensity. Ten minutes came and went in a flash and I felt pretty good. I realized that not only had my headache gone away, I was in a much better mood and felt like I could leap tall buildings. Maybe there was something to this…
The beautiful thing about a shorter workout is that you can still reap a ton of health benefits in a very short period of time. A recent study done by Martin Gibala, professor and chair of the department of kinesiology at McMaster University evaluated the benefits of a shorter workout.
In this 6-week study, participants performed higher intensity intervals of cycling within a total workout of only 10 minutes. The results showed that participants not only increased their cardiorespiratory fitness by 12% but they also saw a significant reduction in blood pressure. These kinds of results reduce our risk of developing cardiovascular and other diseases by 12-15%.
Although this research is promising, Gibala notes that we shouldn’t get rid of our longer duration workouts just yet. At this point, there is not enough evidence that these shorter intense workouts, produce ALL the same benefits as traditional endurance training.
So what does this mean for YOU? If you are currently active, then consider adding a few shorter more intense workouts (called HIIT for High Intensity Interval Training) to your weekly regime. If you aren’t already getting your sweat on regularly, then this is a great place to start. Once you start seeing the benefits of exercise, you may just want to keep going. If you’re not sure where to start, I created this short and sweet 10 minute Fat Blasting workout for you. All you need is a set of dumbbells and some floor space. Give it a try today. I guarantee that you will feel better right now and it could be the start of some great healthy habits.